Saturday, March 02, 2024
Dakota County Historical Society
To preserve, interpret and promote the history of Dakota County.

The Exchange Bank Building was built at 344 Third Street in 1880 after a disastrous fire in 1879 destroyed many wooden structures in the downtown Farmington area. This handsome commercial building consists of red and buff colored brick with limestone trim. The keystones in the arches are stone with a floral design. The cornice and pediment appear to be of pressed metal.
When the building opened in 1880, it was known as the Bank of Farmington and occupied the south side of the first floor, with a hardware store on the north side. The post office occupied the rear of the first floor and an opera or music hall was located on the second floor. Neill’s 1881 history of the county states that the music hall could seat five hundred people! It is believed that after the 1896, the Exchange Bank took control of the Bank of Farmington, and the building became commonly known as the Exchange Bank Building.
Although there have been some alterations to the storefront, the building remains one of the best-preserved 19th-century commercial structures in Dakota County. When it was placed on the National Register in 1980, it was owned by James K. Rietz of Owatonna.

Visit one of these Dakota County Historic Sites